The annual appraisal interview

27 Dec 2023 | Human Resources



The importance of annual appraisal reviews within your company should not be underestimated. These one-on-one meetings between employer and employee are essential tools for human resource management, professional development, and business growth. In this note, we’ll explain why these interviews are valuable, what they consist of, and how they can contribute to the continuous improvement of your organization.


1. What does the annual appraisal interview consist of?

The evaluation of an employee in the company is an optional device whose purpose is to assess his or her professional skills. Thus, the annual interview makes it possible to take stock of the work accomplished and to take stock of the achievement of objectives.

Annual performance reviews typically include the following steps:

Preparation: Employee and employer prepare for the meeting by gathering information about achievements, goals, training needs, and feedback.

Meeting: The employer and employee come together to discuss performance, goals, strengths, and areas for improvement.

Evaluation: Performance is evaluated, objectives are defined, and development plans are developed.

Follow-up: Goals are monitored regularly throughout the year until the next interview.


2. Is the interview mandatory, otherwise why set it up ?

There is no legal obligation to conduct this annual appraisal interview, unless the collective agreement provides for it. However, if it is implemented, all employees must benefit from it.

Even if this interview  is not mandatory, it has its necessity and its advantages:

  • Performance Appraisal: Annual reviews are used to evaluate employees’ performance over the past year. This provides an opportunity to recognize outstanding achievements and identify areas for improvement.
  • Professional Development: These interviews promote the development of employees’ skills and careers. They help identify short- and long-term career goals, as well as the training needed to achieve them.
  • Communication and Feedback: Annual reviews encourage open communication and a constructive exchange of feedback between employer and employee. This strengthens the relationship, resolves potential problems, and maintains a positive work climate.
  • Alignment with Company Goals: Annual reviews help align individual goals and performance with the company’s overall strategy. This ensures that every employee contributes significantly to the organization’s successes.


 3. Can the employee refuse to be evaluated?

The employee cannot refuse to be evaluated by his employer, if he has previously been informed of the professional evaluation methods and techniques used in the company. They must be objective and transparent (no discriminatory evaluation criteria, no criteria that can generate stress).

If the employee refuses to submit to an appraisal interview, the employer may initiate disciplinary proceedings or even dismiss the employee for serious misconduct.


4. How does the interview work?

The interview takes place during working hours between the employee and his immediate superior .


  • Take stock of the past year: positive points (managerial success, missions and projects carried out, objectives achieved), failures (unfinished missions, objectives not achieved) and problematic situations (exceptional events, relational difficulties).
  • Set goals for the coming year: The immediate superior sets the new goals for the coming year and, if necessary, will propose a training ceiling to achieve them.
  • Record any changes: possibility of planning professional developments (change of status and position, professional mobility) and remuneration (salary increase).


    5. What is the formalism ?

    At the end of the interview, a report must be written in two copies. One copy is kept by the employer and the other is given to the employee. If the employee refuses to sign, this does not affect the validity of the interview that took place and the employee may express reservations in the event of disagreement with the information provided by the employer.

    Why is it important to write the minutes well?

    • The results of an appraisal procedure may constitute objective evidence capable of justifying a difference in classification and remuneration.
    • The criterion of the employee’s professional qualities used to determine the order of dismissals in the context of a redundancy for economic reasons may be based on the data recorded in the context of an evaluation system.
    • The appraisal report can be used as evidence in the event of a dispute as to the real and serious cause of a dismissal,  particularly in the context of litigation for dismissal for professional inadequacy of the employee


      6. How we can help you ?

      As an accounting and consulting firm, we can assist you in setting up and managing your annual appraisal interviews. Our expertise can contribute to the planning, structuring of these meetings, the analysis of the results and the follow-up of development plans.

      If you have any questions or would like to discuss how we can help you optimize your annual reviews, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to support your business in its development and success.


      This fact sheet contains summarized information. Please contact us for advice tailored to your situation. We cannot be held responsible for any misinterpretation.


      Claire APPELGHEM

      Head of the HR/Employment Law Department

      01 40 40 38 38


      Share This